tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN June 13, 2014 6:00pm-8:01pm EDT
turkish conundrum right now because of its people being held hostage. broadly speaking, do you expect the turks to be an assertive actor in this sort of squeezing of isis, working perhaps with the united states in this effort? mike? jim? >> it's very hard to find them exactly how the turks view radical islamist groups like al
-- l, isi l, l new stress -- el nustra. is her top turkish government officials, not necessarily others in the turkish state. they see them as their brothers. i think there's an ambivalence but it is not necessarily an indemnity. why did they not pull their people out of there? half a million refugees got out. they were outside of the city but also in the city. kr g and between the angora could not be better. they have an evacuation plan, even here in washington.
>> where are you going to go? [laughter] [laughter] >> would have involved hopping in a vehicle and driving into a kurdish area. they did not take that decision. somebody needs to ask why. turkey right now is not the kind of democracy that will lend itself to that review. first of all, when you have 80 hostages, that becomes job number one. there are all kinds of options , butding cyber, military by and large, you are totally succeeded on that problem. everything else fades. themurks have lived with on their border in some areas for some time and serious. they really do not have a border with these guys and iraq.
essentially -- i would have to look at the map and the developments in the last few days, but by and large, the bulk of the border between turkey and iraq is in the hands of the hash mark up -- pashmurga. they do not have an immediate problem beyond the hostage situation and that's a big one for them. that will divert their attention to anything of a strategic nature until they can fix this. >> ok, thank you. stanley on the left. >> iran according to recent reports, they have boots on the ground. today, they reports are making overtures to the united states to work together on this issue. should we respond to that? should we try to work with iran? -- if so, should we
attach conditions? if so, what should they be? >> jim? >> if we went to maintain a vision of a unified iraq, what president obama laid out, and we went to do with the kurds and the sunni arabs, we have to be any careful about appearance of dealing with the iranians. we talked to them in the witheus era and we met representatives in baghdad. on-offot totally an situation with the iranians but it's pretty close to it. i can see somebody looks in this audience so imagine the rest of the american people. you have a hard time selling any kind of old military operation
which is a hard sell in this town and country right now if it alliance withg an the iranians, of all people. i recommendation would be there .re iranian boots on the ground there will continue to be boots on the ground here and there. all over therpions place. you just have to deal with a threat, something unpleasant that is out there. the idea of a u.s. condominium overruniraq from being with sunni warriors, that would be a hard sell in riyadh and in washington. >> mike tom are you with us? ok, fine. let's proceed. any further questions? will close just what this last
question. i know this really is not very fair, but why not? expectk from now, do you the use of american military force in iraq? yes. it was not to the armenian population but to the irgc guys. they've earned it. isis isertainly unless stopped in its tracks by an iraqi army, that shows very little ability to do that. they will be sufficiently desperate that we will have military action. >> friends, thank you for joining us here today at the washington institute. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by national captioning institute]
>> tonight, we will have more on iraq. we will show president obama's remarks earlier from the white house at 8:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. and c-span 2, the chair of the fcc on a new proposal to increase wi-fi access at libraries and schools. here's a little more about that land. -- about that plan. >> i broke a few books on the civil war. was abrahament lincoln's most recent use of the telegraph. thank goodness that the national , there sat abraham lincoln's hand written telegrams. they got it wrong. he did not dictate his telegrams.
.e wrote them out in longhand thank god he didn't think god they are saved at the national becomes aecause it one degree of separation. when you hold in your white hand,hand -- white golved the piece of paper that abraham there is one on, degree of separation that you feel from abraham lincoln. that a fewrivilege researchers, like i was , get.eged to have what david has done is to those documents, not only be telegrams but the other great holdings in the national archives. one clickede is
between someone who wants to explore and abraham lincoln. when i started my research on lincoln's telegrams, i was using the microfilm copies of his telegrams. you get this canister and use it down at this clunky machine and you would go through each microfilm picture one by one. now thanks to david, you can clicked and it there. like david verio digitize the product, the information. because people like reed hunt made that digitize information why the workat is
we're talking about here today in terms of the importance of keyaries is so incredibly to what gets done. as we are sitting in this room here, we are moving from stacks online centers. the library has always been the on ramp to the world of information and ideas. now it is at gigabit speeds. >> that was from april at the institute of museum and library sciences. you can watch the entire event that 8:00 a.m. eastern on c-span 2. tomorrow, live coverage of the iowa state republican party convention with speeches from louisiana governor bobby jindal, kentucky senator rand paul, former pennsylvania senator rick santorum. that starts tomorrow at 11:00
a.m. eastern here on c-span. >> one of the things people don't always recognize is that during the war of 1812, it was fought from 1812 until early 1815. it was really about america against theng british and this is our second revolution. this flag is the object for which francis scott key penned words which became our national anthem. 1995 that then flag was made to look old and a whole bottom's section that was reconstructed and then it was moved into a new space, theytate -- deliberately did not want to do it again. they wanted the flag to become the metaphor for the country.
it is tattered and torn but it still survives. we're not trying to make it look pretty. we are trying to make it look like it has endured its history and still can't celebrate its history. >> this is the 200th anniversary of the naval bombardment of fort mchenry during the war of 1812. learn more about the flag francis scott key wrote about while we tour the smithsonian star-spangled banner exhibit sunday night at 6:00 and 10:00 p.m. eastern. part of american history tv this weekend on c-span three. >> next, a discussion with the commander of the current mission at the international space station, research, and what life is really like on board. this is about 20 minutes.
." >> commander swanson, welcome to c-span. tell us a little bit about the current activities of the space station. many crewmembers do you have? what are you doing? have six crewmembers appear right now. three russians, two americans, and one german. most of what we do is science a pair. also maintain the station to keep it running smoothly and efficiently. >> with the science experiments that are currently in, can you tell us what areas they generally fall into? why did he need to be conducted in an atmosphere such as yours? like they vary tremendously.
it is looking for dark energy and dark matter, something we're trying to figure out, the basic physics of how are universe came to be. from that, we go all the way to human research on our bodies. how do we change in the microgravity environment, specifically our eyes, muscles, bones. we're looking at details about that and it can have applications where people with different diseases have these kind of reaction that we just get to see it at a more rapid pace. the idea here is things change appear in enough that people can pieces orw different different science objectives microgravitys environment. it's different on earth and it gives them another data set to look at and compare to. it gives a lot more understanding of the problem.
because you are up there in microgravity, talk about the extent of the science. are we talking basic research or advanced? >> is both. is looking forch dark energy. there is also advanced research redoing combustion and cancer research. there is basic science research trying to understand certain basic physics properties and all sorts of other things. it is both. there is so much science going on. it's amazing. like the experiments that you do, how many are nasser, how many come from private sources, experiments that you take on? i don't really know the numbers, but they definitely come from different areas. we have some nasa, some from the
european space agency, something the japanese, some from the russians. we have a whole group of cases that takes in science experiments from all over the u.s. and combines them into a sort of a group from that area. they also did the fly on board. it's a whole bunch of different places that are experiments come from. i just don't know the numbers. life andoke about microgravity. you kind of addressed this, the toll it takes on the body. can you talk about what it's like living in an atmosphere without gravity? can you move around a little to give people a sense of what it's like? hold just floats when you let go of it. that is good and bad. it does not drop to the ground but if i don't watch this in about 10 seconds it will float off and it will take me another hour to find it. moving around is also very fun.
here's a few quick examples of some things you can do. i'm not a gymnast. this is the only place i get to do that. >> how long did it take you to get used to that? do you hit your head? >> definitely in the beginning. it's more difficult. we have competitions now. you have to get the rotation without any side movement and then you can see how many you do before you hit something. it's competition we run appear. large is the station? what are we talking size wise? >> it's about the volume of a 747. it's quite large. it's about 200th 50 feet long
and in certain spots may be about30 feet wide -- it's long. feet >> with the working relationship like between the countries? >> it's a very good working relationship appear. before trained together hand as a cruise of a got to know each other very well. we still work together on a daily basis. we really have no issues. to get learned how around the cultural differences. we are all good friends now appear. it seems to go quite smoothly. current issues concerning tensions between the u.s. and russia. you have three russian cosmonauts onboard. it is issues get discussed on board?
do you get any discussion about what's going on on earth? >> they do get discussed us like any other news event. it's not like there's any negative to it. we understand that it's politics going on. we understand it does not affect our work. we are all friends. it is discussed. >> what are the nature of the discussions like? >> that's a good question. it varies on the topic. relations, we could delve more into the politics of each country in the more of the details about the cultures and what it means in each country. if you break it down that way, you can kind of see what's going on a little more clearly. >> on the science side, if
pulla decides they want to back on work of the space station, how is the united states affected by that? how are the science experiments affected by that? like right now, the science is separated between the u.s. which agency, european space japan, canada, and then the russian side. the russians to get up. and get back down right now. hopefully in a few years we won't need that, but right now we need that to happen and that's probably the biggest deal right here. if we cannot get up here, we cannot do the mission. >> as far as manning and staffing the station, much of that much now depends on commercial aircraft, commercial
space craft. what has been the experience with this commercial base craft staffing and supplying the station? justght now, they are applying the station. we are right -- we are happy we have american cargo vehicles coming up. these are good vehicles. offload our dependence on russia and other countries. we are happy about that. we look forward to the next to crewent when we get an american vehicle and lunch and the dynamics quite a bit. now, it's just the cargo coming up. we hope we will have one here less than a month to,. and get us some new food in new science to work on. in thehat's involved next step? how did things change?
>> the next step is proving that the vehicle is safe for humans. we have a few companies now bidding for that opportunity. the they start into project, that will be by 2017 and we will have a manned test of an american vehicle at that time. they will probably do one test next ones then the from then on will be rotating crewmembers on the american vehicle. >> how much input do you and the other crew members have to these five companies? how is it seemed? --how is it received? >> i personally do not have input but the other offices do. i believe it is received quite well from talking to the people who do that work. want thepanies
contract and they want to build a good vehicle. they do listen and tried to make the best vehicle they can. of course, there is a cost analysis going on at the same time. they cannot build the most luxurious cadillac out there. however they build a good vehicle. >> commander, you talked about moving forward and 2017. as far as the station, how long will it remain functional? >> that's a good question. right now, on paper it is until 2024 and that is to certify the life of certain components and also for the resupply missions for certain things. it can go longer if we wanted. it depends on where we want to spend our money. >> what do you mean by that?
>> the nasa budget is limited. a portion of it goes to the space station and keeping it running. different task we want to take on, going to the moon, mars, asteroids, we might not be able to do both at the lan time given how big each is. >> what is the role of the station in future manned spaceflight past the moon? now, helping future spaceflight, this station is a test that. right now, we have a recycling system for water we are working on. we recycle all of our water, condensation and urine, everything. there are many examples we have that we are testing to enable us to go further. >> you would say the station needs to pass 2024?
>> it's a good question. i'm not sure it's needed. it would death may be a good testbed for all sorts of things. we can easily get things up and from here. if you want to make an update to your product or your equipment, you can do that more easily. having, it's all about the limited amount of money, where you want to spend it, and your object is. >> if 2024, if nothing is decided will it just fall to earth? >> again, that will be decision for management. our politicians and the next administration. if they do decide that it is no longer needed, they will de orbit the station and will burn
up on reentry. >> every day we go through our normal lives in a gravity atmosphere. what's it like on a day-to-day level in a weightless atmosphere? what are some things they might not expect, the things you have to overcome because of the environment you are in? >> it's really the simple things that are made much more difficult appear. getting up in the morning and shaving, getting yourself ready. short, froms awful 40 feet behind me. but it's little things like that in the morning. you don't have a sink, watch up in -- to wash up in. you have to go to the toilet differently, brush your teeth differently, eating is a chore. it all wants to go everywhere. all these little things and leaving tying your shoe ends up to be difficult for some reason.
you don't have a gravity here so you have to be a little more flexible. all of the little things that you did not think about making it a little less efficient to be appear. however, there are many benefits. the whole floating thing is just a very fun thing to do. looking out the window is fantastic. >> oncecannot be beat. you return to earth living in the environment you are currently living in, how does your body adjust? >> we work out two hours every day appeared to help on that return. we insure our muscles will be strong and our bones do not lose any bone density. we used to always worry about the nero system-- neuro system. it varies a lot between people.
once it gets back in control, you are still strong and your bones are good. six weeks of rehab and you are back in the 95th percentile with when you are feeling and what you can do. >> how long have you been on board the space station? >> i've been on board two and half months and i return in three. >> her background is in computer science. howard eu and an astronaut on the space station? -- how do you end up an astronaut? >> i decided being astronaut was a goal. i also worked on aircraft control system. that could play into working on selectione in the process.
there are so many qualified people. it takes a little bit of luck just to get in. had all the requirements needed in just a little bit of luck and i made it. usand about 30 seconds, tell about the best experience you've had on board the space station itself. experience is always looking out the window and the best way is going on the spacewalk. that's the best experience, heading out the door. it's a fantastic feeling. you have a little pressure on you at the same time, but it's quite an experience and it's something i'm looking forward to doing again. >> commander steven swanson on board the international space station talking to us about experiences there. commander, thanks for talking with c-span. >> thank you.
take care. >> more tomorrow on "washington journal" with space news reporter dan leoni. before that we'll speak with michael rubin on policy options for the u.s. in iraq. and natalia abrams has reaction to the president's executive order this week. plus your phone calls, facebook comments and tweets tomorrow on "washington journal," live starting at 7:00 a.m. eastern time on c-span. tonight, more on the escalating violence in iraq with remarks by president obama. he spoke to reporters earlier today at the white house. we'll show his remarks again tonight at 8:00 eastern here on c-span. n c-span2, reed hunt, a former f.c.c. chair to increase wi-fi access at u.s. libraries and schools. here's a little more about the plan. >> first personal note. my sister is the head librarian in rockville, maryland.
my nephew is a librarian. my mother was a public schoolteacher. my brother is a public schoolteacher. my sister-in-law is a public schoolteacher. and i once was a public schoolteacher. in washington, they would be called "takers." but we regard ourselves as a family that has had a long, long commitment to public service, and i'm very proud to -- if i can be so bold to say that i'm part of the library community. and now, i would like to express some of the realities of the situation. and not everything i say is going to be good news. the library community -- folks, we need to step up our game. we are in the playoffs. we need to aim higher, we need to pull together, we need to fight more fiercely, and we need to understand that this game is definitely worth a
candle. and it is critical that everyone understand the political realities that face chairman wheeler and that face the f.c.c. before i go into any more detail i want to make sure that you understand that i was not in fact the creator of the e-rate. leadership is critical in every walk of life, but particularly in politics. and i want to acknowledge the two principal people who were the leaders that created the e-rate. first, al gore. t was in the winter of 1992-1993. al called me into his office. he was a senator who had just been elected vice president of the united states. so the office was right over there. and he said, "if i can we are swayed president elect bill clinton to make you the chairman of the f.c.c., i'll do it if you promise to find a way to have the following occur -- i want every school girl in
carthage, tennessee, to be able to go to the library of congress without buying a bus ticket." i want all that information digital, and i want the most remote school child in the poorest community in the united states to have access to it. >> we'll have more from that event hosted in april by the institute of museum and library services. we're showing it tonight at 8:00 eastern on s c-span2. tomorrow live coverage from des moines of the iowa state republican party convention, with speeches from louisiana governor bobby jindal. rand paul, and former pennsylvania senator rick sanatorium. that gets underway tomorrow at 11:00 eastern on c-spafpblet you can go to facebook.com/c-span to share your thoughts and comments via twitter. use the #v-spanchat. >> when i started covering
congress you had people like senator russell long, wilbur mills, danny rostenkowski, howard baker, people who were giants in their own way. got a couple of those guys themselves into trouble. but overall, these were people who knew how -- they were all very intelligent. they knew how to craft legislation, they knew how to do a deal and they all worked with whoever the president was, whether it was their party or the other party. yes, it was politics, but at the end of the day they usually found a way to come together and make decisions for the good of the country. today, you don't see that anymore. first of all, i think the quality of the congress, house and senate, in terms of their intelligence and work ethic has diminished. they're still great people and i shouldn't malign -- there are wonderful members on both sides, but i think that they are a minority.
i think increasingly people are driven by the politics and by their own self-survival. i think the hardest work they do is raising money. it's not learning the issues, it's not crafting deals. it's making speeches and positioning themselves to get re-elected. >> emmy award-winning journalist and investigative reporter lisa myers is leaving washington, d.c. behind. find out why sunday night at 8:00, on c-span's q&a. >> for over 35 years c-span brings public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings and conferences and offering complete gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house, all a a public service of private industry. we're c-span created by the cable tv industry 35 years ago and brought to you as a public service by your local cable or satellite provider. watch us in h.d., like us on facebook and follow us on
twitter. >> next, house majority leader eric cantor, his loss in the recent primary and what the influence of the tea party might be in the midterms. this is from "washington journal." it's 40 minutes. matt kibbe of s , it is looking like kevin mccarthy is going to be the majority leader. yeah, it is interesting, the republicans have a tendency to pick the next guy in line, particularly when it comes to leadership races. it is such an inside game that anybody within the web structure has a competitive advantage. i think labrador will give them a run for it. i like competition, and i think it would be good for fiscal conservatives to get a seat at the table. i also think that the leadership should probably learn something from this about inclusiveness. i think they have been a little heavy-handed. eric cantor is certainly prove that in his district in
virginia. they might think that this is a good time where we all sit down and say ok, how do we actually work together on some things that matter? what you think about kevin mccarthy? guest guest: i think he is a typical product of the eric cantor leadership model. i would not criticize him specifically, but i would suggest that the old, very top-down -- this is what we're going to do model of house leadership does not function in a distinct allies -- in a centralized world anymore. it used to be the case, this is not just john boehner, but new egrets before him, that -- but newt gingrich before him would come down and say these are the priorities that we were going to ruled the house with a lot of that. today, with so many factions within the gop, i think a different type model is important, and i'm not sure the kevin mccarthy understands the
new world, and i'm not sure eric cantor ditty, either. -- did, either. host: is eric cantor a conservative in your view? guest: he would be a conservative by the centers of the 1990's and 2000 gop. today the challenge for cantor -- areer republicans is they actually able to set out a clear line of ideas that separate themselves from the democrats? this is what hurt him. he was trying to split the difference on some of harry reid's really bad ideas, like the immigration bill, instead of saying this is what the gop wants to do, not just on immigration but on other things. and they started with that. i am not suggesting that is easy to do, but republicans have won when they actually represent a set of ideas. it happened with ronald reagan, it happened in 1994, and it theened in 2010 with
contract from america. host: matt kibbe, that is a lot of inside baseball that you gave us. were the people in the seventh district of virginia aware of all this inside baseball? guest: they were innocents because there is that same fight for control of the virginia gop, and i think this was eric cantor's achilles heel. he was viewed as a reagan fan top-down and out of touch not only with his district but with the people across the state of virginia. he tried to game the system of the convention process. 20/20 hindsight, we all should have seen this coming, but we did not of course. host: we are talking with matt kibbe of freedomworks. (202) 585-3881 for republicans, (202) 585-3880 for democrats, and (202) 585-3882 for
independents. what is of freedomworks and what is your philosophy? guest: freedomworks is a grassroots educational the group to educate people about not just be political process but ideas based on economic freedom and individual responsibility and fiscal conservatism. a lot of people think that we are a political organization, and i would argue that that is just a small part of the services that we provide to our members. we are primarily about the link community. we are what barack obama would call community organizers but perhaps with a very different agenda. host: would you consider yourself a libertarian, a conservative? very: we lean conservative, but the proper a phrase is probably classical liberal. we focus on economics. we do not get involved in a lot of social issues. but there is a clear trend is not just with the gop but public opinion particularly amongst young people trending more libertarian, and you are seeing this with civil liberties, you were seeing it with the
popularity of senators like rand salience thes of this whole idea the withinent should live its means. we are talking about the fourth and fifth amendments at the equally important, and that cuts across the old conservative liberal model. you are on the air. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i have an issue with the fact that everybody is saying eric cantor is not conservative enough. today romney is not in the white house because of folks like cantor, and we need to embrace the immigration issue and other factors. yesterday or the day before when eric cantor had the news conference, he started by
saying something to the fact that he grew up in a hebrew home and cited something from the old testament. how much of this is due to the fact that he was overly ambitious to become speaker? he is the only male republican jew in the congress. all right, we got the point. mickey, that has been raised in a couple of different areas, the fact that eric cantor is jewish. guest: i think that had absolutely nothing to do with that, and i think he would be the first one to say it. he was a successful republican politician not only in virginia but right across the street here . but the first point is important because i think a lot of people would go back and say you know what, he spent so much time trying to run for speaker that he forgot that he represented the people of virginia. there is a hubris there, and i think that is one of the factors that led to his defeat.
a lot of people had said that this was a victory for the tea party. it is depending on how you define the tea party. if the tea party is an ecosystem as a grassroots matters and that people are showing up and getting more involved and more connected in the political process, yes, absolutely. and there are a lot of tea party leaders across this district that were very involved in this, but if it is about capital t, capital p tea party, that is not what this is about. this is about the empowerment and democratization of citizens. i think that is a very healthy process. it is not just happening in the gop -- it is happening with the democrats as well. host: where were you when you found out that eric cantor lost and how shocked were you? guest: we were in our office, and we were surprised, even though some of the activists had told us that this was going to happen. of course we hear that and a lot of these races and it is not always work out that way.
bratd spoken with david and work right -- and were white impressed with him. he is a conservative economist, but wow, that was something -- andow with obviously he made history. but it will not happen all the time. the advantages of incumbency are very important, and mitch mcconnell prove that. but i would go back to joe lieberman in 2006. people do not remember this, but the progressive left beat joe lieberman, a very powerful incumbent senator, and really disrupted the status quo, and you were seeing this more and more. there is a trend line here. barack obama did the same thing as hillary clinton. that new poll out showing chris mcdaniel is about eight points over thad cochran. "new york times" says the mississippi senator has a plan
for avoiding a cantor-like fate by saying we will expand our pool of voters. guest: certainly the cantor defeat what wins in the sales of the activists in mississippi. i was with them on election night, and the first thing they said is -- are you guys still going to be with us? and i said of course. i would suggest that it is wishful thinking on the part of the thad cochran's campaign that they can expand the voter pool at this point because democrats who of already voted are not eligible to vote in a runoff runoff, so traditionally lower turnout affairs, and this race will be won on the ground. all of the energy, all of the machinery of put up the vote is on the side of mcdaniel. journal" hastreet
a story about the oklahoma senate race. do you guys have a dog in this fight? twst: yes, we have endorsed shannon, and i think this will be a dip or type of test for our community because there is a third candidate as well that is betweeng the votes shannon, and i'm struggling to butk of the guy's name, langford is clearly be established toys, and i think the lesson coming out of north where we try to beat tom tiller, who was the establishment choice, is we split our votes, and if we split our vote two or three ways, it is hard to win, and i think that will be the test here. it is not a perfect analogy .w. shannon is the speaker of the house there. he is not an economics with us or would be characterized as a complete outside insurgent. host: mike in kingston, you were
on with matt kibbe of freedomworks. caller: thank you for taking my call. let me comment on something the previous caller said about the reason eric cantor lost or the reason that romney lost. romney was not a true conservative. romney was losing primaries. the people did not want him. he was next in line, and it has been said that had all the had all he people who voted for mccain voted for romney, romney would be president today, but the main theg i wanted to ask, but tea party is not an actual party, it is a movement, a conservative movement. what if the republican establishment allow the liberal mainstream moderators -- i mean media to always moderate the debates when it comes time to be presidential debate? and when it comes up for supreme
court nominees, what they always say elections have consequences? why don't we stand up and fight against these soto mayors and kagans? one of the bozo they can vote against the supreme court's they cannot get a -- why don't they get out and vote against the supreme court? part of it,ee with the gop has a responsibility to control the rules of debate as long as we do not cut out all of but they should limit the number and they should control who the moderator is because they very much let other people do find the narrative and change the subject. the supremeion of court, i think we are learning this the hard way, the reality is that public opinion and grassroots pressure applied to the courts as much as they apply to congress. it is our job tas
citizens to show up, get educated, and drive the opinions because the courts read the papers, too. judges look at public opinion polls. it may not be what we like to happen, but it happens. we need to step up to that challenge. host: matt kibbe, when you go to mississippi, what exactly does freedomworks do when you're down there? guest: we have been sitting down with the activists since december 2013. 35 grassroots leaders from across the state, representing their networks. the first thing we do is ask them -- what do you want to do? voteally it is get out the efforts. and what typically insurgent campaigns do not have his basic materials like yard signs and door hangers and phone lists and walking maps. that is what we do. if you think about the service center model like to politics, we typically do not do mass shoe leatherdo
politics because that is what the activists want to do. in this new world, the decentralized model of tapping into all of that local energy is the way that we get the upset victories that sometimes we see. host: so you get the money for that type of activity? we are a super pac, so we cannot coordinate with a campaign at all. we produce materials that say vote for chris mcdaniel, retire thad cochran. we come up with precinct walk on data and all the stuff that is simply done, and we split up the work. and i will be in five cities across the state and this is basically our launch. we scramble to produce a whole new set of materials after primary night, and this is what they needed. this is what they asked for, and decidingnk, was one factor leading up to our victory that tuesday. host: isn't that a coordination when you say what you want -- guest: no, you are talking to
citizens. you're not talking to members of mcdaniel's campaign. we are happy to report that citizens still have a first amendment rights to produce pagan politics, and we hope it stays that way, but no, it is very much outsource. i would also point out that quite often the opportunities that we pursue -- we do not get involved in every race, but quite often the opportunities that we do pursue are brought to us by our activists. we surveyed them, we ask them which races they think matter, and we keep pushing them to show us why they think that is true. that is how we discovered mike leigh in utah i think before anybody else. that is how we knew ted cruz had .raction it is part of this model. there is a lot of local knowledge that all of us in d.c. do not have, and if you are humble enough to ask for, sometimes you can get it. host: why are you headquartered in d.c.? guest: that is probably part of
the old model as well, although we happen to be based in this building, and it is quite convenient to either go upstairs or downstairs to talk to msnbc or fox news or c-span, but i think as we move forward, everything is driven over the internet and social media, and you can do that anywhere. we would still like to have an impact on what they do in the capital, and sometimes showing up matters, but we really think that our constituents, our support is what drives public policy. host: victor tweets -- if conservative means "my way or the highway," than it is the highway for conservatives because the country is not theirs alone. guest: i do not think that is what conservative means at all. i think the bottom-line is that washington has gotten so out of control that a little bit of disruption, a little bit of challenging the status quo --
shaking things up a little but it's probably a good thing to do. we would argue that going into bailoutwall street -- there is been a lot of bipartisan collusion. nobody had actually stood in front of the train is thaand sad you know what, we cannot do this anymore. if that is why conservative means, willing to stand on principle when no one else represents real problems, that makes a lot of sense. host: paul, indiana on our republican line. you are on with matt kibbe of freedomworks. guest: kind of a personal question, if matt kibbe voted for mitt romney or not. i voted the district of columbia, and i voted for ron paul because i did not have the ability to impact the outcome of the election. if i had lived in virginia, i
would have voted for mitt romney without a second thought. host: barbara in lewisville, texas will sto. hi, barbara. caller: i'm here in dallas where they had the republican platform, and the first one on your was repeal the 17th amendment to the constitution so legislature selects u.s. senators. i want to get his opinion on cents tedhe think cruz is the darling of the tea party. thank you for taking my call. guest: i think there is an about theg debate 17th amendment. there was a time when senators were selected by state legislatures, and the babel would argue that moving to direct election of senators has somehow undermined the people's voice in washington. i'm not sure that is true anymore. i was never completely convinced
by that argument. particularly today, and i would point to mississippi as an example of that, i think grassroots have very much a voice in this process and the ability to hold even entrenched governors, and our and state legislators going to solve a problem yo? it is not clear. meetingate legislators in indianapolis, what you think about that? there is a big push for an article five constitutional convention, and the idea would be to fix some of the corruptions we have seen in the constitutional limits on big government. bulletsptical of silver and constitutional amendments and conventions and a perfect piece of legislation, and my answer to everybody is if you want to fix washington, build a community. if you want to pass a bill, build a community. if you want to fix the
constitution, you want to repeal the amendment that allowed for the income tax, you had better build a community because if you open up that can of worms at a convention and you do not have the kind of organization and public opinion behind you, things could go wrong. kibbe is at graduate of george mason university. he has a new book out -- "hostile takeover: resisting centralized government's stranglehold on america." that will be featured on program infterwords" the coming weeks. speaker boehner, i want to get your reaction to this. [video clip] a true cantor has been friend, and i want to thank him and think his staff for his service to our conference and thank them for the service to our country as well. there is no one around here who puts more thought into advancing our principles and the solutions for the american people.
i look forward to him continuing to lead our efforts here over the summer. as for the future, let me share a little bit with you what i told the members yesterday. this is a time for unity. this is a time to focus on what we all know is true. the president's policies have told the american people. his administration cannot get ,ur economy back to real growth and he continues to endanger our troops and citizens with his failed foreign policies. at this point, the administration cannot even provide basic services to our veterans. we need to elect a congress that only have the will to stop the president but the power to do so as well. everyday we are showing the american people that we have got better solutions. today, we will act on to more jobs bills that help small businesses invest and grow. fortunately, senate democrats
continue to sit on their hands and failing to act on the dozens of jobs bills that are sitting over in the senate. guess what? so long as the american people continue to ask the question -- where are the jobs? we will continue to be focused on this one issue. kibbe.att thet: well, i think challenge for boehner and the republicans is to prove that they have a better set of ideas i am not sure they have done that yet, obviously. to keep doing what they have in doing may not be exactly the right solution. there is this internal fight between the strategists of the gop. strategists,an establishment strategists, believe the best thing to do is to not run on issues. do not say much about health care. do not say much about the budget. times thestory, the
republicans have one, is very contrary to that. and i do not know what that is. that is risk aversion inside the beltway. you saw that in mitt romney's campaign. you see that in leadership, versus bold ideas that really change the conversation. 2010, almost every republican the contracted from america, crowd sourced from the grassroots. the need to run on policy. i get the "where are the jobs" thing. issue.nomy is a big obamacare is a big issue. civil liberties will be a big issue. but they need to set out a platform they are willing to defend. -- host: who is the leader of the republican party today? guest: the answer should be mitch mcconnell and john mainer.
but i think the ideas wing, 2010-2012,lass of and i would suggest some numbers , are the 2014 election ones working to fix obamacare. let us say the rand pauls and --d cruzes and michael e -- a lot of the world of leadership is coming from the bottom up. from texas.ller is good morning. you are on "the washington journal." i have a quick question. what does the constitution tell us? and forthrd back about going into other nations and doing what they are doing today.
, who considers themselves to be conservative? we went into iraq. why didn't we track the money that was taken out of iraq? money,y tracked that where would we be today? host: we talked about iraq in our previous segment. any thoughts you would like to share? guest: i think the constitution is clear on this and james madison was adamant about this in the drafting process. congress's authority to declare war. and we just had this fight when the president announced he would unilaterally go into syria, bomb grassrootsit was a uprising that insisted he go to congress instead. that is historical. it has not really happened.
, particularlys the obama administration and bush administration, trampled that limit. i think if we did that, we would be a little more circumspect about where we would go to war and what the rules of engagement would be. a tweet -- how much did freedomworks donate to virginia seven? zero. we do not give directly to candidates, so that was never an option. if i had two things i do not have, for frick foresight and unlimited resources, we would have been there. i would argue it is particularly awesome this did not happen with freedomworks support. our job is not to get involved in every race and change outcomes. our job is to support a community so they can do it. our strength is in
decentralization. we are like to see that involved less and less and the activists take the future. host: the caller is on our republican line. caller: i can assure you goofballs, three goofball operations in veterans hospital. they could have a clean bill of health. i am trying since september of last year to get a pair of shoes that works on my feet. i got braces on both legs. washington is a veterans party, somebody who knows how to get jobs done and straighten out these hospitals. host: matt? guest: i would love for you to join freedomworks, because you said it better than i did. somebody needs to come to washington and kick butt.
wasn'teran scandal outrage. that we do not provide health care to the men and women who served this country so heroically is an affront to everything we are supposed to be about. that said, i wonder why we have healthize, single-payer care system for veterans. it does not work that well. it proves that people wait in line. care is rationed. people die. i would rather get every veteran into the same health care that is available to the rest of us, and we should pick up the debt for that. tim is calling from damascus, virginia, on our democrats line. a couple moments left with our guest. caller: thank you so much for c-span. everybody is part of this politics thing. we are not getting anything done. i think we need term limits on these congressmen.
we need to take the big money out of politics and put it back into normal people's hands. 90% of this country is middle-class at the best. the rest of the people is rich. we need term limits, and politicians today are working for money. i love my country. i would like to see it go back to the people who really care about our country. i hope the democrats will take it all. i hope we can take both houses. we have a democratic president. i do not want to see a standstill for two more years and not get nothing done. if we can do that and put the hands back into the poor people and the middle class people of this country, we can run our country and get something done. and you for taking my call. -- thank you for taking my call. guest: i love permits, -- term limits come a especially the way they were imposed in virginia a
couple days ago. he spent so much money. we favor some companies at the expense of others. we choose winners and losers in our economic system. as long as washington is so big and so interested, it is going to attract all the wrong types of interests into the political process. look at it in mississippi. all that money comes from d.c. lobbyists, and they have been explicit about it. this has been about getting special favors, about seniority. they are investing a lot of money in that. take away the ability to choose winners and losers, to rearrange have spending is appropriated, and you will take away the big money in politics. what do you think about the fact that you have to compromise when you have divided government, like we currently do? think you do have to compromise, but compromise is
not splitting the difference on somebody's bad ideas. it would be harry reid saying, this is my plan, public and saying, this is my plan, and sitting at the table and fighting it out. art of it is going to the american people and asking them to weigh in on that debate. you cannot do that unless you have two sets of ideas at the table. miami, independent. good morning. caller: i believe the sleeping giant has just been awoke. i do believe that all you have to do is look at what is going on in europe, with the eurosceptics. people in europe are getting frustrated. i believe the people in this country are fed up with this immigration invasion. i honestly believe that if we do not stop what is happening in this country, we will become a third world. we have to stop what is happening in the united states of america. we have to enforce laws already on the books. i believe if we do not, we have
a big problem ahead of us. the sleeping giant has just been awoke. i believe you are going to see a major change in this country in 2014 in november. i do not care if you are democrat, republican, or independent. people are going to say it enough is enough with immigration. look what we did in arizona to jan brewer. they are illegally shipping people into this state. when is this man who is supposed to be president of the united states going to enforce the laws on the books? agree with you that something is happening in america, and i think it is a healthy thing. it makes me strangely optimistic about the future of this country. i would argue that america is a leader in the world, and if we do not defend freedom here, it is going to have a hard time driving anywhere else. part of it is frustration with the insider attitude and collusion of interests that have
run this country in the wrong direction. the other part of it is the liberation of people. you have better information from multiple sources. you have the ability to connect with other people who think us like you and want to get involved in the process. i know moms that have bigger facebook pages than county gop's. that is one factor explaining eric cantor's loss. the other is arrogance and his dominance by insiders. but people have to step up. people have to get involved. this country was designed specifically, and george washington was quite clear about this. he said that it evil don't show up, but people don't defend that sacred fire of liberty, it goes away. host: is money equivalent to speech? i think she is going for the corporations are people. believe thaten to people should be allowed to invest in politics, and we need
more political speech, not less. the fact of the matter is, any investment init politics is typically pushed by incumbents, who have all of the advantages in the process. i do think in the future, and we proved this -- the activists proved this last tuesday -- that --ey -- i think cam for theor spent $5 million -- answer is to engage more political speech, engage more people in the process. even social media costs money. we have four point 5 million people on our facebook page. billing that community was not cheap. engaging the community, at the margin, is near zero. i think that is the future. it used to cost millions of dollars to mail people or run tv ads. it is not freedomworks anymore.
moms can do this. citizens can do this. that is the future. tot: laura says, i give it brat. barbara, in austin, texas, you are the last call for matt kibbe. have a really important question and then a secondary question, and i would like a direct, clear answer to this first question. why doesn't the tea party operate as a third party, not just writing on the coattails of the republican party? and then there is my other question. host: quickly. ofler: i have heard a lot talk about fixing or replacing obamacare. as i see it, this combination party, republicans and tea party, only reacts to things. they never make original proposals. so i wonder why they never proposed any health care plan
until the affordable care act was passed, and they reacted to it. host: thank you. separate party for the tea party? a fan i have never been of third parties for the simple reason they do not work. i think the libertarian party has proved that. that said, if the gop does not reform itself, it runs the risk of going the way of the whigs. i suspect it is not going to be about a third-party challenge, but about a repopulation of the gop hugeey do not accept this movement of libertarians and fiscal conservatives that are newly empowered by the internet, they are going to miss the opportunity to be one of those two parties. the second question was -- host: that was about why republicans and tea party do not create their own legislation, just react. guest: i will plug a specific
project we are working on right now, called prescription for america. we are asking citizens to weigh in on what they think the solutions to obamacare are. we did this in 2010 with the contract from america. we worked with the folks that pushed that. we think the future is all about crowd sourcing ideas from the bottom up, because we are not getting it from our leadership, they respond to incentives. if we create a constituency for a good idea, you will have politicians of all stripes glomming onto it. host: next on washington journal,
iraq. this is 45 minutes. is the u.s. going to intervene militarily? -- depends what you mean by intervention. you already have some advisors. about air strikes, the iraqi government has been really asking for that for months and hasn't gotten it, and president obama said yesterday that all options are on the table. i would say it cannot be excluded, but i don't think
it's likely immediately, in the immediate future. host: why not? guest: because the white house, when president obama took office, in his eyes, one of his signature foreign policy accomplishments is ending the war in iraq, and i think from a political standpoint, he's reluctant to acknowledge, really, that the war never really ended. what ended was the american presence, military presence in iraq, but not the war, and we're seeing that now. host: looking at your article in this morning's "new york times," the iraqi army was crumbling long before its collapse, u.s. officials say. is there time to ponder and to look at the situation for a while? guest: the time to have done this was a year or two ago. immediately after american forces left iraq, anthony blinkin, now president obama's national security advisor, gave a speech in which he boasted really that violence was at historic low, and the message from the administration was everything was in good shape.
but in reality, all of these factors were at work. if there's going to be a solution for iraq, it can't just be one thing. it can't be air strikes or advisors. it has to be kind of a holistic solution, as the administration likes to say. it has to involve political reform t. has to fwolve a more inclusive iraqi government. it's going require the iraqi armed forces, better commanders, and i think from the military standpoint, it's logical to think that if the situation deteriorates, the iraq has no air force, might knead some additional help from the united states. host: is baghdad in danger at this point? guest: i don't think so. i think as sweeping as the insurgent advances have been with the fall of mosul, and they control fallujah, now they're in tikrit, moving where the oil refinery is, i don't think they're going to topple the city per se, but i think there's a very good chance that
they're going to infiltrate the areas, the so-called belt around baghdad, and use them as sanctuaries to launch suicide and car bomb attacks into baghdad. there's already some of that going on now. this is precisely the tactic they used against the united states, and so they were pushed out by the american surgery and general petraeus in 2007 and 2008, and i think it's likely they'll return to that. host: michael gordon, were you surprised at how fast this seems to have come on, or have you been monitoring this for a stpwhile est: well, these days, i'm though i covered the iraq war, covering the state department, got a whole big world to track, i'm not surprised that al qaeda in iraq, which is basically the group that's come back under a w moniker, al qaeda for iraq and the levant, sometimes known as isis, i'm not surprised
they've come back, because we've taken the heat off. and this is a group that doesn't respect borders, so they're in syria, and they're in iraq. nobody is really putting the heat on them in syria, and nobody has been putting the heat on them in iraq. this is a problem of american intelligence. you can go back and read the testimony to congress six, nine moss ago. and also, mosul, which fell last week, has been under siege . an article i did with my colleague in december, we noticed that at night, the insurgents controlled mosul. hat said, yes, i'm surprised at the speed of the iraqi military collapsed. host: wasn't al-maliki just re-elected? guest: this have a parliamentary system, and his party did better than expected in the voting, and so he's on track to serve another term, and he exploited the unrest in iraq politically to present
himself as the strong shia figure who would stand up against sunni insurgents. the tragedy is that he hasn't been the sort of mandela-like figure who could bring people in iraq together, so while he benefited politically in the narrow sense, he's endangered his country in the process. host: 202 is the area code if you want to talk about iraq and the situation there with michael gordon, chief military correspondent for the "new york times," 585-3881 for republicans. 585-3880 for democrats. 585-3882 for independents. twitter and you can send an email as well, journal ath an.org, or twitter cspanwj. where does iran fit into this? guest: iran is a big part of this. they're not behind these insurgent attacks at all. but they have extensive
influence in iraq. they've contributed millions of dollars under the table to all of the shia parties, and they've basically told the senior iraqi leadership that if they need iran's help, iran will intervene not so much by sending their own operatives, but by training and mobilizing iraqi shia groups and putting them at the government's beck and call. they trained militants to attack troops and furnish them with the weapons to attack american troops, including a very deadly type of i.e.d. throughout the iraq war. iran did. so they were sort of involved in a proxy war against the united states throughout the whole iraq war. but they're in a position to do that again. so i don't think, if that happens, i think it won't be for the good. if the shia militias begin to enter the fray, and there are already indications of that, then you have the makings of a
sectarian war in iraq, in syria, really across the whole kind of greater middle east area with all sorts of very serious consequences for turkey, jordan, saudi arabia, all of the states in the region. host: the "financial times" talked about the kurds, kurds see chance as fighters head to kirkuk. how does this affect the kurds up in the north? guest: the kurds, the kurds are part of iraq, but they've always had a semiautonomous status. they have their own military force who are quite capable, but basically light infantry. o you don't see these al qaeda insurgents. after mosul, they went south toward baghdad. they didn't go north or east into kurdistan, because the kurds have a defense capability. but what they're likely to do, to secure their own interests and also maybe to expand their
realm of control, to move more into the disputed area of kirkuk, which is an oil-rich area, which has long been an area of contention, they may see this as a chance not only to protect themselves, but also to grab some territory, which has been disputed, which will add to the kind of fractious sectarian situation. host: how much time have you spent in iraq? guest: well, i wrote three books about it, and i covered the first american war, the desert storm war, and then i was there for the invasion as an embedded correspondent in baghdad and fallujah and all these places. and i wrote two more books about it. but i probably spent sort of on the ground in an embedded, physically on the ground with the soldiers type situation a couple of years, and, you know, i've been there as a visitor, you know, i've covered the invasion, i covered the terrible sectarian violence. i covered the surge. it did work as a military
operation. and then i covered the post-surge and withdrawal of the troops. i was last there with secretary kerry, who visited iraq early on, but unfortunately, the administration has not been that engaged with iraq. when kerry was there, who has all sorts of energy, he was there once for several hours. i believe hillary clinton was there once as secretary of state. vice president biden has been there more often, but really, he's been trying to deal with it by telephone primarily, periodically. so the level of political engagement by the ministration has not been as intensive as it might have been, and this isn't lost on the iraqis, unfortunately. host: in your last book about iraq, it was called "the end game." who was your co-author? guest: a retired marine, three star. what i did then, by the way, i took it through the withdrawal of american troops and the
failed negotiation, because we did try to -- kind of tried to keep troops in iraq, pretty much like they're planning to do temporarily in afghanistan, and that negotiation failed. but what the book did was it identified, i think, some of the factors that are now leading to iraq's unraveling, which is limited american engagement and attention, limited attention, and also sectarian and authoritarian behavior by maliki, which we were not so much in the position to curb as we had before, because we didn't have a presence there, and we weren't that engaged. host: could drones and air strikes slow down isis? guest: well, that's an excellent question, and a more complicated question than some people think. the iraqi foreign minister suggested on the record last august in washington that drones be considered, almost a year ago. nothing happened.
and at the time, the administration said, well, it's just the foreign ministry, it's not maliki, but then by march, maliki himself was signaling an openness to drones and air strikes, becausealiki, but theyd see their position was desperate, and iraq does not have a significant air force. he cannot reach out and bombed these camps. if the goal is to hit these camps or hit guys as they are coming across this area where they are coming from, air power can be effective at doing that for sure. we do it for ourselves in afghanistan, so i presume we think it is effective. but where it is very collocated is now. combing goldforces with each other. you have insurgents who have captured american weapons, prisoners who wear iraqi uniforms, and telling the combatants apart without the people on the ground is quite difficult, so it is not at this
stage from a purely military perspective, they could play a role, but they are not, you know, you require good intelligence, and it is not a very -- how would you use them in mosul? but i think yes, they could contribute. the point i would make is again the holistic approach. before the united states offers to use its forces i think from an analytical perspective, it should continue the -- condition this as they number of experts commitment to reform the armed forces, to not take commanders based on narrow political considerations, otherwise we are just adding another military tool into a
conflagration, but if it was part of a package in which political steps were taken, i could see how it could be a benefit. host: michael gordon does the "new york times" have reporters on the ground in baghdad? guest: yeah. host: one of the last time you talk to them? what is the feeling over there yo? times" in an age of constricting coverage, we have been bringing around the bureau treats, i just teeth, i just saw him, we have people in baghdad, we have an in networkoo, of iraqi correspondence around the country who by the way cannot always be identified by name due to fear of retribution, "times" has a
presence there. i'm not sure i can say that about the television networks. -- can twitter question someone explain to me how the u.s. supports sunnis fighting assad/shia in theory and support ki/sunni in iraq? good question.a what the questioner is raising is there is a group, this isis group respects no borders. they have established their throughd caliphate western and northern iraq, and they are interested in controlling this territory, and it is a sunni group. formed out of al qaeda and iraq.
is a problem that spans borders, but when the american government looks at these ourlems, unfortunately national security bureaucracy looks at these problems in isolation. we have a team that works in syria, we have a team that works iraq, we have a team that works lebanon, but all these factors are colliding and interacting, and what you need is a strategy for the two. i would say our support for the syrian opposition is extremely modest, and our ambassador -- i wrote a story about this -- and our ambassador to syria left, and he said he could not support modulated,, a very career guide who served everywhere, a careful, methodical person, not little partisan. he said he could not support the
policy because we were not supporting the opposition in a significant way. they talked about supporting them in a sieve and way, but they have not so far. but the challenge is to craft a works in syria and iraq, and one way in which it thenot be so difficult if opposition were in theory supporting in syria was also opposed to this al qaeda-led group, there are sunnis opposed to this sunni group because they are more moderate. so it is possible to support them because they also oppose the same group maliki opposes, but i do think we need i -- therege malik need to be significant sunnis in the maliki coalition so does
the government of iraq versus the insurgents, not shia versus sunni insurgents. doesn't this throw us back into the assad group too? guest: how so? host: we do not want to develop, iraq does not want it developed. so -- guest: no, i think it is more sinister than that. assad presents himself as the bulwark against extremists, and there is some evidence that there is a bit of a tacit understanding between the assad government and this al qaeda-linked group. when he carried out bombing raids, he sometimes existed -- exempted i.s.i.s. targets. to assadp is useful because as long as they are
around, he can say hey, it is either me or al qaeda, and that is the argument indeed he made to the world. so it is a complex situation, ad i think this group is danger to america because they have created a kind of an extremist say swearing from which attacks can be launched against western interests, but i do not think backing assad is the solution. host: michael gordon, chief military correspondent for the "new york times" is our gu ests. iraqve a fourth line for veterans as well, we want to hear from you, [no audio] (202) 585-3883. we want to hear from you. our first call is an independent, jane. what has do believe all got in me, we must stay
out of that war. they have had civil wars before, and if they have a civil war, they must take care of themselves. we should not intervene, not one bit. it is none of our business anymore than we are their business. if they tried to intervene on us here, then we intervene. jane, just to play devils advocate for a minute, what if the current government in iraq falls, and there is some chaos over there, does that affect us? not affect it should us at all. what is going to affect us if we intervene in any way at all, that is going to affect us. it is going to get us in their civil war, and then there will war, and open world that is not worth it one bit. host: mr. gordon. i am not here to advocate
a position, but i think you need to keep two things in mind -- first off, according to the fbi, homeland security, the american intelligence experts, senior american officials, on the record -- i am sure you have covered these things on c-span has now got a sanctuary in northeast syria. they control a great swath of territory in iraq, and jihadists from all over the world have fought to join up. including americans. there was recently a case, as you know, in syria where an american citizen carried out a suicide bombing attack. in syria. the great fear of american intelligence community is that some of these jihadists who have joined this group, which now has
toanctuary, may return western europe, to the united states and present a terrorist threat here. indeed president obama addressed this concern in his speech just two weeks ago at west point. it is very concerning. so it does affect us. securityan american stake here. if this group maintains the iraq,ary in theory a and -- in syria and iraq, it could prevent a terrorist threat against western interests. second point -- iraq is a major oil producer, i wrote it down, 2.5 million barrels laid a day. and they picked up the slack for the chaos in libya and also the affect the sanctions have had on the world's oil supply. most of the iraqi oil is in the southern part of the country, not in the north, but there is some in the north.
if you were to have a total collapse of iraq and the iraqi state, this would affect the world oil supplies will stop indeed in the financial pages today, you will see oil prices going up. this will have an affect on economic growth. this is happening today. at a time when the iraqi stake te is still intact and the oil insecure in the south. from those economic and security standpoint, i think the united states does have a stake in what happens in iraq. host: do you have any idea how many americans are currently in iraq? they fall into two categories. there is the embassy personnel, which is probably any -- i do not know the precise figure, but you know, probably in the thousands. and then there is the office of security cooperation, maybe 100 or 200 people, which basically concerns itself with foreign military sales and some
mentoring of iraqi forces, but it is very limited. but there is a contractor presence because iraq has been purchasing with its own money billions of dollars of its own money american weapons systems including f-16's. and yesterday, the state department spokeswoman put out a statement that these contractors were being pulled back. i do not know if they are leaving the country to go back to the moc compound, but being moved as a precaution. presenceis an american here, but obviously nothing like what used to be. host: southern iraq, bosnia, pretty serene, safe? guest: safe is not a word i but basara but bos
is pretty well removed. it is so far removed from these operations in the west and north. sea of tranquility tweets into you -- where did the i.s.i.s. militants in iraq get their weapons? who supports them? guest: it is a good question. first off, i.s.i.s. militants are in syria and iraq, and the leader is physically in syria to the best of our knowledge, so they do not respect this border. they moved back and forth. support.a lot of fromhave a lot of weapons that congregation. plus, even more ominous, suicide bombers. get of these jihadist repurposed for the fight in
iraq, and the rate was 30, 40, or 50 a month of suicide bombers . if you had 30 or 40 suicide bombings in this country every month, you can imagine the effect it would have on us because they can be and evenically militarily -- and now he unfortunately, they captured a lot of weapons. when they took mosul, they captured iraqi weapons, american weapons, some significant weapons. the prison and liberated some of the worst of the worst who cannot join their cause. and where to get their money echo they are mostly selfless any because -- what al qaeda and iraq did, and i covered them before the surge, they were self-sustaining financially. they had kidnapping, they had extortion, kind of like a criminal syndicate. now they have the oil refinery or at least they might.
estate, they would be control over homes in mosul and go to the government say we are selling this and demanded the rockets. they had intimidation, they were going to businesses and shaking them down. al qaeda and iraq was actually self-sustaining financially during the american war in iraq. it did not rely on outside flows of cash from al qaeda central, and i suspect even more so because they control more territory. host: thomas from texas, you were on with michael gordon of the "new york times." to movet, we're going to mike and or word, massachusetts, democrats line -- in norwood, massachusetts, democrats line. caller: good morning. i will say no, we do not go back into iraq. it is like history repeating itself. i make an analogy with the
vietnam war. we had to the country for know, theasons, you domino purée. we fought the war, and then we withdrew, handing the war over to the local troops. .he local troops could not hold they abandoned their uniforms, they gave up, and we just looked on helplessly as the population abandoned the country. exactly what happened in vietnam 40 years ago is happening today. i say no. we cannot get involved in iraq at all. with ground troops, planes, anything. is that a fair comparison to you, vietnam comparison? guest: no one is proposing sending in ground troops.
present obama is regarded as a hawkish figures. he said air tricks -- he said air strikes are an option, but he has not talked about ground troops. you don't want to get in on the way we were before. they are talking about limited airstrikes and a stepped-up advisory effort. i think you would have to consider the airstrikes in seriousoo, if you are about this militarily because they are on both sides of the border. i think the their analysis is to use afghanistan in this sense. what happened was we got out of iraq at the end of 2011, pretty much lock, stock, and barrel. the iraqim with military as they were well known. and from a purely military standpoint, i think the iraqi
military and the american literary would agree they need more advice, and american advisers, more kind of -- very limited american presence just to help them stay steady on their feet and maintain our influence there. now we have a plan to get out of afghanistan at the end of 2016, and it is pretty much on the iraq model. there are going to be no advisors in the field with the afghan troops after 2015. there is is going to be the small office at the embassy as there is currently in baghdad. i think the cautionary message , and iflooking at iraq you are concerned about the current situation in iraq, is that what we're going to be looking forward to in afghanistan after 2016? samese we are using the template. all troops out, and we are going to run a very limited and almost certainly inadequate advisory effort out of the embassy, and
if we do not like what we are seeing in iraq, we should adjust the plan in afghanistan, not to fight their war but play more of an advisory role for their forces. host: ron tweet sent to you -- mr. gordon, every intervention in the middle east has resulted islamic jihad gaining ground. guest: i think the reason this islamic group has been so and iraq has syria been because the united states created a bit of a military and security and political vacuum with this withdrawal that they have exploited. of a presence that has created the space for this group to grow, and not the presence. host: how much do we know about
the leader, baghdadi? he is a known figure because he fight against the americans, but there are others that joined this fray and commanders, there is a chechen -- a lot of jihadists have sort of flocks to this cause. once they get a cause, people kind of rotten to the sound of suicide bombers, and so they have grown in strength. this is a group that has been on the american intelligence community's radar for some time. barbara, new jersey, independent line. michael gordon of the "new york times" is our guest. caller: good morning, mr. gordon. real fast question. i believe fear demands request. based on the current presidency 's decision to advertise and prematurely withdrawal our troops, has this contributed to what is going on today, and how important is it now for us to
secure our borders? i will hang up and take my answer off the air, thank you for taking my call. guest: the reason we do not have troops in iraq is a cop located one and i try to untangle it all in the book. there are a lot of iraqi blame to go around on this, too. president obama engage in negotiation with the iraqi government and offered them the chance to maintain a small .merican presence only with maybe a squadron and a half of air craft. maliki wanted an american presence. he told me so in an interview i did with him in 2011, but he did not think he could get the approval of the iraqi parliament, and in the end, there were some -- a lot of --
the iraqis did not request the, did not get it through their think there'st i also some response ability on the american side because the current administration imposed a pretty hard bar for keeping american troops there, which was not only that the iraqi government requested and approved it, but that they approved by the iraqi parliament, and is in fact was not a requirement that the bush administration imposed. so i would say there is a lot of ambivalence in the white house about keeping troops there, but they did offer to do it if the iraqi's could meet their high standards, but i think there is really probably responsibility on both sides for why the negotiations did not pan out, and certainly not just on the american side, although i do think the american ambivalence was apparent to the iraqis, the american government ambivalence. i do not have a perspective on the border issue. host: michael ward up of book
about iraq is called "the theame: the inside story of struggle for iraq, from george w. bush to barack obama." general bernard trainor is the co-author. john is on our iraq vets line. good morning. caller: good morning. i was there in 2003. i am concerned about this. they really open a can of worms there. those people are wonderful people. i have been on the ground with them. they are a good people. there is a void left by saddam hussein, they had no identity. they never had a chance to get their feet on the ground. it takes much, much more time.
they are very motivated -- al , you know, and i am not sure about this administration and our motivation, so they know that there is not motivation on our part, so they will keep the dancing. -- it will be an effect on the world much more than people really think. i think we need to be -- have at least an air base there and maybe somehow special forces, embassies there. we never should have gotten fully out of there. people have a country to be a part of this world and move on, and these radical islamics are just taking over and without regard, and they have no conscience, believe me. these people -- they do not care. host: john, thank you. michael gordon. guest: i think that is a
perspective that a lot of people , not all, but a lot of people, especially senior levels in the u.s. military share that from a , ifly military perspective the politics could have been worked out between the american white house and prime minister maliki, and a greater effort would have made to work them out, the negotiations were very brief. i think on the whole, the negotiations over keeping american troops in iraq, president obama only spoke with maliki twice -- at the beginning and at the end. anwas not as intensive made ins is being afghanistan right now. i would say most american military people and on the iraqi side, we would have preferred to see a limited american presence, not to fight the war, but to train iraqi forces and maybe give them some intelligence and air support and just maintain a greater degree of influence with
the iraqi prime minister. i think that is a military perspective. host: a tweet -- the so-called democrats that we prop up over there alienated their populations by their greed and corruption. has there been evidence that the current government is corrupt? guest: well, i think it is corrupt when it comes to power. and this is my point, that while somebody can make a case for airstrikes, and indeed the iraqis would have liked them months ago, and they might have made more of a difference months obama think president himself has considered, it can only be a part of it. the bigger problem is the way premature maliki have kind of conducted himself -- the bigger problem is the way prime minister maliki has kind of conducted himself. but he does not
share power. he has chased some of his sunni officials in his government out of power, threatened to arrest them. inclusive been an figure who has built in ties and share power with the sunni community. he has abused some of his power. their procedures for how to be commander in chief in iraq, you who reports directly to him, he does not need parliament's approval. does not create a more inclusive government unity, i think one reason this and surging group at some basis support of population is fear, but the other group as much of the sunni community has been alienated, and alienated from government.
maliki and the people around him need to think that, either by getting a new premise or by i to change his ways. that has got to be part of any coherent american strategy. that is something the united states should have pursued a year or two ago and set up waiting for the crisis to arrive on its doorstep. from what you know but the pentagon, would they be ready right now is something military were to happen? the pentagon can do what needs to be done, but as i pointed out, you can't just carry out airstrikes unless you you have a scorecard and you can tell the good guys from the bad guys, and that takes a little would've doing. we would have to gather intelligence, we would have to put at least a teams of people to help plant some of the stuff, drums have to be within range -- drones have to be within range of the targets. on the other hand, we occupied
the country for many years. it was the most important war much of the pentagon ever fought in. almost all of the pentagon leadership, general odeirno, general dempsey, this is a country that people in the pentagon know where he well, politically and militarily, they probably know better than the white house. anne, reading, pennsylvania. caller: hello, mr. gordon, my -- why is the border closed in view of the events going on in syria? why is it so difficult to contain them close to the border? guest: that is a good question.
i mean, even when the americans 150,000, one hundred 60 thousand troops there, we do not control the border. that is a long border. far away. it is next to a country where there is a raging civil war. the iraqi forces have had some forces up and along the border. they have not been very effective at controlling it. to controlhing is -- a long border, it is really important to have air assets. you cannot just depend on a guy driveehicle who can maybe 50 kilometers this way or that way. you need air assets. they do not have them. they did not have a real air force. they are now just building in the fall some f-16's. they do not have their own drones. the drones we have given them only recently -- a very short
range. i mean, this would have been -- to really do something like an effective way, this would have been an area where american and iraqi cooperation might have been fruitful. not to put our own people on the border, but to help them keep an eye on their border through our air. that has not really happened in any significant way. host: from what you know, michael gordon, lynn holly hanson asks -- how to the iraqi people feel about the u.s.? well, it is a cop located question because the iraqi sunnis, theyy are are shia, they are kurds, so they all have their own separate perspective on the united states, and within the shia, there are many different varieties, and some are close to iran, some are religious, some are more secular, so each
community is kind of atomized and broken up. i would say the kurds traditionally have been very strong supporters of the united states and would welcome a greater american involvement. the vice president biden has good relationships with them. they're disappointed the united states is not focus more on iraq, but they still enjoy very strong ties with the united states. the sunni community the used to be very positive for the united states, ironically because during the search, we were the protectors of the sunni against some of the shia militias, but i would say they are very alienated from the current -- yes,nt, and i don't the sunni leaders american government talks to, but the absence -- i cannot even begin to tell you what sunnis think about america today. i think within the shia community -- i think the fact that america is only episodically been engaged in
, diplomatically at the senior levels, i think has had an effect, and i had shared an e-mail with a very -- i had an e-mail exchange with a very senior iraqi official just yesterday, and i said -- what do you want? ,nd e-mail the came back said had a kind of a bitter undertones and it was something like at this point, we do not think there is anything you will really do for us. and we are not counting on you. i think reflects some sentiment within the iraqi leadership that the united littlemoved out just a quickly, even though granted the iraqis were part of that decision process, but you know, there are others. thingsis asking for from the united states. i do not think the iraqis want
american troops on the ground than i do not think we want our troops on the ground, so i think there is agreement on that, but i think within the iraqi leadership, they want a greater american role but kind of in a supporting capacity, not doing the fight for them. host: is there panic in baghdad? guest: yesterday in a closed hearing, the senate armed services committee, the senior american general who trains iraqi forces, i was told by a congressional member who attended, related to these congressmen that some of the iraqi soldiers to protect the green zone where the iraqi readership is wear thei civilian clothes under their military uniforms, the message being if the situation get out of control, they could just throw off their uniforms and blend into the population and run away. so i would say no, there is not panic in baghdad, and i do not think baghdad is going to fall in the near future, but there is
sufficient need that the military there has given some thought to going awol if it comes to that. so i would say yeah, there is probably a lot of unease, and it permeates the [captions performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] >> next, several perspectives on the situation in iraq. first, we'll hear from president a pentagon briefing kirby.ar admiral john president obama says the united states will not be sending but he has asked his national security team to prepare other options. spoke and took questions at the white house before he left for north dakota california.